How Posture Affects Vocalists’ Live Performance
Posture sounds like a cold, technical word. But the posture a vocalist takes makes a big difference in vocal ability and effectiveness. Here are some guidelines for posture during the live performance:
- Don’t stand firm
- DO NOT LEAN FORWARD toward the audience in such a way that your rib cage is squeezed forward; this will also cause problems with support and control of breathing. If you lean forward, lean from the hips to keep your ribs wide open.
- DO NOT TIGHTEN YOUR RIB by hunching up when singing while playing guitar, keyboard, drums, or other instrument.
- Stand up or sit HIGH and FLEXIBLE.
- Play your instrument with an OPEN CHEST! Move toward the microphone with your feet and body so that you can lean back a little, not forward!
- Stand or sit so your weight is BALANCED ON YOUR TRUNK.
- FEEL THE SLOT – Allow dance-like movement in your feet, legs, and spine. This will also transfer energy to the hips and glutes, resulting in more correct breathing support (vocal power must come from the pelvic floor).
- Move TOWARD THE MICROPHONE STAND (by leaning back and opening the hood) when using an armrest while standing, singing, and playing. This tip is VERY important. If you’re using a straight stand, make sure you get close enough so you don’t have to lean forward and close your ribs. Or take the stand in your hand and tilt it towards YOU. Or better yet, take out the mic and use it to help you balance yourself. Don’t tilt your head to follow the mic, give the mic back!
- Use SAFE BODY LANGUAGE … This is not an arrogant stance. It’s a take care of business stance that tells your audience that you have something good to give them.
- Keep your HEAD BACK, CHIN LEVEL, neck loose and when going for a high note pull head level slightly by the side.
- TALK WITH YOUR HANDS! … are connected to your arms, shoulders, spine, rib cage and eventually to your diaphragm. This is also a good stage presence. Just make it seem true… make sure your hands are part of what you are saying or singing. Don’t let them become a deadlift by pulling your ribs down and inward.
The position you take says it all. Make sure it conveys confidence, courage, freedom, and connection. Not only will your audience see and hear the difference, your voice WILL FEEL the difference.